Welcome to the latest issue of Airline Cargo Management.
The air cargo industry has been in a state of turmoil so far in 2022, with a range of forces at work. In his regular column, The International Air Cargo Association’s (TIACA) director general Glyn Hughes provides an excellent overview of these forces and examines how best to overcome them. He believes the need for further innovation and new solutions has arisen, while further collaboration will also be vital.
All sectors of the industry are feeling the impact of the past few months and years, and in this issue we look at some of these sectors in detail to see what changes and innovations are being made.
Our cover story on cargo handling features a selection of industry participants. They show how cargo airlines and ground handling operations are evolving, and are now balancing the increasing demand for e-commerce and consumer electronics with the imperative drive for sustainability. The electrification of cargo handling equipment also holds considerable promise, and all these factors are explored in the story.
Air cargo management systems remain the backbone of cargo operations, and we assess the factors that make up a good system, what differentiates them, and how design, usage and demand is evolving.
Elsewhere, we explore how Brussels and Miami International airports have established themselves as successful pharma hubs, and how they and their partners innovated during the Covid crisis. We also look at the changing role of general sales and service agents, who are similarly innovating to address market needs.
Other changes to the air cargo landscape are underway. Qatar Airways Cargo, for example, recently announced two important – but very different – partnerships in a bid to drive innovation. With Cainiao Network, the logistics arm of Alibaba Group, the company launched a weekly chartered flight from Hong Kong to Sao Paulo in Brazil in order to serve one of Cainiao’s fastest growing e-commerce destinations in Latin America. We asked both companies for their thoughts on why this region is now so attractive.
Qatar Aiways Cargo has also partnered with engineering company Gaussin to test and commission zero-emissions vehicles for freight transportation, which is the subject of our ‘Green sky’ column.
The sustainability theme continues in a new regular column provided by FIATA, the International Federation of Freight Forwarders Associations. On p16, the organisation explains its role in helping the industry become more “sustainable, humanitarian and prosperous”.
Ultimately, this issue shows that while it may have been a bumpy 2022 so far, there is a lot of hope for a bright future.